North Dakota and Minnesota fight over electrical power


Oklahoma oil and gas companies with heavy commitments to operations in North Dakota are likely to be paying attention to a growing flap between North Dakota and neighboring state of Minnesota.

Here’s what the flap is about. Earlier this year, Minnesota’s legislature adopted a law that requires the state’s utility provideers to transition to 100% carbon-free electricity sources by 2040. It includes sources brought across state lines, according to a report by the North Dakota Monitor.

As a result, North Dakota leaders fear the Minnesota plan might threaten gas and coal companies in their state. More than half of the electricity generated in North Dakota ends up for out-of-state customers. Most of the power goes to Minnesota.

The law prompted North Dakota leaders to send a letter to the Minnesota governor asking for a modification of the zero-emissions plan. At the same time, North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum and other state leaders are considering a lawsuit against Minnesota.

It wouldn’t be the first time. North Dakota sued Minnesota over a 2007 law that was similar and ended up struck down by the courts. It barred Minnesota from buying energy from any new out-of-state coal plants. A federal judge ruled the law was unconstitutional because it regulated the economies of other states and the ruling was upheld in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit.

Click here for North Dakota Monitor